Yemen: the plight of begging children victims of war

Yemen: the plight of begging children victims of war

Ali, a 14-year-old boy, and his 7-year-old brother Majdi, lost their father in a raid. Left to their own devices, they have only to spend their days begging in the streets of Sana’a, the capital of Yemen where children are the first victims of the war.

Ali tells his story without emotion. “We lived safely in Hajja province with my father who sold qat (euphoric herb) to live in. One day he fell ill and we took him to the Médecins Sans Frontières hospital. The hospital hit by an air strike and my father died; we moved to Sana’a 5 days after he was buried. ”

Since then, Ali and his little brother, their faces dirty and dressed in rags, wander the streets. They sneak between the vehicles, which they propose to quickly clean the windscreen in exchange for a few parts.

They earn almost three euros per day, which is not enough to feed their mother and their eight sisters (…)

The human rights situation in Yemen has deteriorated dramatically, since the escalation of the conflict in March 2015 involving an Arab coalition commissioned led by Saudi Arabia.

UNICEF estimated the number of children suffering from acute malnutrition at 2.2 million. The UN recently called for 2 billion euros aid this year for Yemenis. For Stephen O’Brien, the head of UN humanitarian operations, without international support, Yemenis are at risk of being threatened by famine in 2017.

AFP